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Houston Preview

After a long layoff, the Cyclones get back in action against Houston. These types of layoffs can be good and bad. On one hand, having the guys take a little break and being able to spend some time on conditioning and development can be good. On the other hand, not seeing any game action can result in some sloppy and flat play.

Regarding the four factors, ISU has the edge in eFG% (56% vs. 51%), OR% (32% vs. 26%), and FT Rate (38% to 31%). Houston has a big edge in TOV (11.6% vs. 19.1%). Another thing worth mentioning, is that while ISU has been shooting the ball better in percentage terms, Houston is a slightly more efficienct scoring team, averaging 1.13 points per possession compared to ISU's 1.12. While this isn't statistically different, it's just worth mentioning that Houston can put the ball in the hoop.

That said, we're better in 3 of the 4 factors, meaning that we should win the game, and the experts agree (see my January outlook post). As long as we come out ready to go, it should be a good game. If we start off sluggish and Houston lights it up, it could be a long afternoon.

The game tips off at 1pm CST, at Hilton, and is on Mediacom, ESPN360.com, and ESPN Fullcourt.